Effects of Gillnet Entanglement on Mortality of Dusky Dolphins (Lagenorhynchus obscurus)
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Wildlife populations are negatively impacted in a variety of ways. Humans, in particular, have played a huge part in species declines today as well as species extinctions in the past due to overexploitation (Coleman and Williams, 2002; Erlandson and Rick, 2010). Recent declines of large marine vertebrates that are of little or no commercial value, such as sea turtles, seabirds, and marine mammals, have focused attention on the ecological impacts of incidental take, or bycatch, in global fisheries. The dusky dolphin (Lagenorhynchus obscurus) is a marine mammal that inhabits coastal waters of the Southern Hemisphere which commonly is caught in gillnets. However, the effect of gillnet-related mortality on the population dynamics of this species is unknown. I will conduct a thorough literature review to obtain the best information available related to gillnet entanglement of dusky dolphins as well as the basic demographic data necessary to develop a stochastic population dynamics model. Then, I will use the model to estimate the potential effect of gillnet-related mortality on the population dynamics of dusky dolphins in view of the parametric uncertainty associated with the model. The results indicate that the decline of the Lagenorhynchus obscurus population size is due to the negative effects of gillnet entanglement.
Subjectdusky dolphin, gillnet
Arevilca, Aminta (2016). Effects of Gillnet Entanglement on Mortality of Dusky Dolphins (Lagenorhynchus obscurus). Undergraduate Research Scholars Program. Available electronically from